Here are additional links for information on COVID-19 to help address concerns:
Oakland County Health Division: What you need to know
MDHHS: What is Michigan doing?
City of Royal Oak: Resources if you are in need of help
For further assistance regarding COVID-19, go to www.oakgov.com or call Oakland County’s Nurse On Call line at 800-848-5533.
Beaumont Health launched a free online COVID-19 risk assessment tool that allows patients to answer a series of questions about their symptoms and help them determine whether to stay home or seek medical attention. To use the free online risk assessment tool and much more, visit: www.beaumont.org/coronavirus
Confronting COVID-19-Related Harassment in Schools: A Resource for Families
Confronting COVID-19-Related Harassment in Schools
DATE: May 14, 2021
FROM: Michael F. Rice, Ph.D., State Superintendent
SUBJECT: U.S. Departments of Education and Justice Fact Sheet: Confronting COVID-19-Related Harassment in Schools
This memo is to share a new resource from the U.S. Departments of Education (USED) and Justice (DOJ): Confronting COVID-19-Related Harassment in Schools — a fact sheet for students and families. This resource can be found in the Race and National Origin Discrimination section of the USED Office for Civil Rights’ (OCR) Reading Room, in English, Chinese-simplified, Chinese-traditional, Korean, Tagalog, and Vietnamese, with additional translations expected later this month.
This information supplements a recent MDE memo that provided curricular and other resources to combat anti-Asian hate and bullying. We share this new fact sheet in an effort to assure that students and families are aware of their rights in school settings and of how to access help, if needed, including from OCR in the U.S. Department of Education and the Civil Rights Division in the U.S. Department of Justice.
In the communication about this new resource, USED and DOJ referenced President Biden’s Memorandum Condemning and Combating Racism, Xenophobia, and Intolerance Against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States, in which he stated: “The federal government should combat racism, xenophobia, and intolerance against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and should work to ensure that all members of AAPI communities — no matter their background, the language they speak, or their religious beliefs — are treated with dignity and equity.”
MASKS NO LONGER REQUIRED IN SCHOOL
Starting February 28, 2022 Royal Oak Schools will move to recommend masks for all staff and students, but will not require them to be worn indoors
In the Oakland County Health Division press release announcing the expiration of the Emergency Health Order requiring masks, Health Division Medical Director Dr. Russell Faust said, "As we see our critical measures of vaccinations, hospital admissions, and cases moving in a direction that tell us the COVID-19 impact on our community is greatly improving, the time is right to remove the mask order for daycares and educational institutions." The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), and Oakland County Health Division recommends masking indoors regardless of vaccination status.”
Given the recent data and local conditions, we have several reasons for making this change. Royal Oak Schools has seen a dramatic drop in COVID-19 positive cases. All of our schools are equipped with UVC air purification systems in the HVAC units or individually installed in classrooms. This is unique to our district and can have a significant impact on the spread of any virus. (See below)
The Oakland County Health Division monitors key metrics that guide safety measures for the public. According to their press release, “The county's test positivity has dropped nearly 50 percent; cases of COVID-19 during the week ending Feb. 6 declined 40 percent, and the seven-day case average for Feb. 8 declined 83 percent from its peak in early January. Hospital admissions in Oakland County for adults dropped 72 percent since the peak on Jan. 10 and declined 67 percent for children since the highest admissions on Jan. 8.”
According to the State of Michigan COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard, as of Feb. 8, 75.8 percent of Oakland County residents 5 years old and older received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine. This number is even higher for residents 12 and older with 79.1 percent receiving their first dose while senior residents 65 and older have the highest first dose protection at 92.9 percent.
As we move forward, we need everyone to continue to contribute to the safety of students and staff while in school. Please note the following important information:
- Masks are still required on all school buses and other forms of public transportation.
- CDC, MDHHS & OCHD still strongly recommend masks regardless of vaccination status.
- Locally, our positivity rate is low.
Throughout the pandemic, Royal Oak Schools have monitored local conditions, considered the recommendations of the health professionals, and adhered to the health orders in place in order to best protect our students and staff. As the conditions change, we too have changed our practices and learning plans. This is another important step for our district as we complete the school year while still dealing with the COVID-19. We will closely monitor the conditions moving forward, and if need be, we can amend our mask policy and communicate any changes.
VACCINE INFORMATION FOR YOUTHS
With the recent approval of Emergency Use Authorization of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for youth aged 5-11, all school-aged youth (aged 5-18) can now receive the COVID-19 vaccine. In collaboration with Oakland County Health Division and Oakland Schools we would like to share local vaccine clinic information with you.
OCHD has community vaccine clinics available on their website, OaklandCountyVaccine.com. To make an appointment go to OaklandCountyVaccine.com or call 1-800-848-5533. Anyone under 18 must have a parent/guardian present.
Visit Oakland County Health Division’s ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ webpage to learn more about vaccine safety, eligibility, and what to expect at your appointment. Oakland County’s Nurse on Call is also available Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. to answer any health-related questions at 1-800-848-5544.
RESOURCES FOR YOU:
WHAT IS COVID-19?
WHAT IS COVID-19?
COVID-19, which stands for coronavirus disease 2019, is caused by a virus named SARS-CoV-2.
It is described as a family of viruses, some of which can infect people and animals, named for crownlike spikes on their surfaces.
The viruses can cause the common cold or more severe diseases such as SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome) and COVID-19, the latter of which first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China.
Symptoms of COVID-19 can include fever, cough and breathing trouble. Most develop only mild symptoms. But some people, usually those with other medical complications, develop more severe symptoms, including pneumonia, which can be fatal.
The incubation period for the new virus is thought to be up to two weeks.
TO MINIMIZE THE SPREAD OF ALL ILLNESSES, INCLUDING THE FLU:
Wash your hands frequently
Wash your hands frequently and regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.
Stay home if you feel unwell. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions of your local health authority. National and local authorities will have the most up to date information on the situation in your area. Calling in advance will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also protect you and help prevent spread of viruses and other infections.
Maintain social distancing
Maintain at least 3 feet distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing. When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has the disease.
Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth
Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
Practice respiratory hygiene
Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
Stop the spread of germs
You can take steps to protect yourself and others during a COVID-19 outbreak. The virus spreads from person-to-person in close contact and being exposed to the virus on surfaces, then touching your face with unwashed hands. Recent studies indicate that people who are infected but do not have symptoms likely also play a role in the spread of COVID-19.
SCHOOL QUARANTINE AND ISOLATION GUIDANCE
There have been some changes by the Oakland County Health Division (OCHD) regarding COVID-19 notification, and isolation and quarantine guidelines.
The OCHD now defines the status for COVID-19 in our community as "Post Surge Recovery Phase" which is defined as “no immediate resurgence predicted. Local and state public health will monitor conditions that could lead to future surges.” They also reported that for the period of March 07-20, 2022, there was a decrease in positive COVID-19 cases observed for all age groups in Oakland County, ages 0-90+.
OCHD has also updated the guidelines for isolation and quarantine including changes in guidelines for household exposure.
- Monitor symptoms for 10 days
- Wear a mask around others for 10 days following exposure
- Test 3-7 after exposure or if symptoms develop Changes in guidelines for household procedure.